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Oakland Township

Township seeks historical designation for Cider Mill

August 27, 2014

» click to enlarge «
The Paint Creek Cider Mill is on the site of the Goodison Grist Mill, built in 1835 by Needham Hemingway.

OAKLAND TOWNSHIP — The Paint Creek Cider Mill may be named on the National Register of Historic Places.

Township officials believe the mill holds a valuable role as a historic structure.

“The Cider Mill building is the single most important building in Oakland Township,” said Barbara Barber, Historic District Commission member. “It played a critical role in the settlement of Goodison.”

Goodison is an Oakland Township historic area that was first settled in 1825. The Paint Creek Cider Mill, located on Orion Road, south of Gallagher Road, is on the site of the Goodison Grist Mill, which was built in 1835 by Needham Hemingway. In 1877, the mill was improved and enlarged by William Goodison.

The mill ceased grinding wheat during World War II, and in the 1940s — after more than a century of service and having passed the point of preservation — it was dismantled, and the present Paint Creek Cider Mill was built.

Today, the mill is owned by Oakland Township and holds offices for the Township Historic District Commission, Oakland Township Parks and Recreation, the Paint Creek Trailways Commission and the Six Rivers Land Conservancy. The mill also holds a retail operation offering cider, doughnuts and more.

The Paint Creek Cider Mill is located next to the Paint Creek Trail. Owned and managed by the Paint Creek Trailways Commission, the trail is an 8.9-mile linear park and was the first “rail-to-trail” in Michigan.

The trail was converted from the former Penn Central Railroad track and has been open to the public since 1983, receiving over 100,000 visitors annually.

By a unanimous vote Aug. 12, the Oakland Township Board of Trustees approved support for the Paint Creek Cider Mill application to the National Register of Historic Places.

“I think this is a very good idea,” said Oakland Township Trustee Robin Buxar.

“Acting on this is very important,” said Heidi Patterson, Oakland Township Historic District Commission chair. “When people think of the township, they think of the mill.”

About the author

Staff Writer Linda Shepard covers Rochester Hills and Oakland Township for the Rochester Post. Shepard has worked for C & G Newspapers since 1998, graduated from Oakland University and is a past winner of the Michigan Press Association award. Shepard takes an avid interest in Detroit’s history and current rebirth.

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